After the Dodgers non-tendered Russell Martin last night, they announced that they re-signed Rod Barajas tonight. He agreed to a one year, $3.25 million deal. On the Dodgers website they state he will replace Russell Martin and team up with A.J. Ellis. Big Rod is 35, and has played 12 seasons in the majors for many teams including Arizona, Texas, Philadelphia, Toronto, New York Mets, and now his favorite childhood team, the Dodgers. We all enjoyed the heartfelt story last season of Barajas living out his dream of playing for the Dodgers. He even hit a HR during his first home game wearing blue. He only has a career .239 BA, but he does swing a power bat giving the Dodgers some much needed HRs. Last season he hit 17 HRs, which was 2nd among catchers in the NL. In 2009 he hit a career high 19 HRs.
Bitching has commenced regarding the amount of the salary given to Big Rod once the news broke. The thing is the Dodgers needed a catcher. We couldn't rely on the inexperienced A.J. Ellis as the solo backstop. With Martin's uncertainty and the slim pickins' for catching prospects amongst the free agent pool, we really didn't have much choice. Let's move on, accept that Big Rod and Ellis will be our catchers for 2011, and concentrate on filling the offensive needs we desperately must address.
Ya know thinking about it more, we really don't know how A.J. Ellis will turn out. He's only played in 53 games! Let's give the guy a chance! Maybe he will actually hit his first big league homer this season. He showed some potential in the last part of the season with a surprising hitting streak.
Will Vicente Padilla be back? Will the Dodgers snatch up more free agents like Diaz?
Stay tuned for more offseason deals and news!